Municipal EMS Directors and Managers CAOs of Upper Tier Municipalities and Designated Delivery Agents Ornge

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1 Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care Emergency Health Services Branch 5700 Yonge Street, 6 th Floor Toronto ON M2M 4K5 Tel.: Fax: Toll Free: Ministère de la Santé et des Soins de longue durée Direction des services de santé d urgence 5700 rue Yonge, 6 e étage Toronto ON M2M 4K5 Tél.: Téléc.: Appels sans frais: November 29, 2007 MEMORANDUM TO: FROM: Municipal EMS Directors and Managers CAOs of Upper Tier Municipalities and Designated Delivery Agents Ornge Malcolm Bates Director Emergency Health Services Branch RE: Training Bulletin, Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard I am pleased to present Training Bulletin,. This Training Bulletin has been developed to provide an opportunity for paramedics to review the key points from the updated DNR Standard. This Standard will replace the existing DNR Standard, as found in the Basic Life Support Patient Care Standards version 2.0. The updated DNR Standard will be implemented on February 1, A new Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Confirmation Form is an integral part of the application of the updated DNR Standard. This Form will direct the practice of paramedics and firefighters after February 1, 2008 in situations where a DNR order is part of a patient s treatment plan. Fire Departments will be developing Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) that incorporate the use of the DNR Confirmation for firefighters. These SOPs will be similar to the DNR Standard for paramedics. This Training Bulletin includes information on the changes to the DNR Standard and Form, a comprehensive list of Questions and Answers as well as Case Studies that paramedics can review to test their knowledge of the Standard and its application. Sufficient copies of this Training Bulletin will be printed by the Branch so that you can provide every paramedic in your service with a copy in advance of the February 1, 2008 implementation of the revised DNR Standard. In the future, a CD-Rom will be released as a continuing education initiative to further enhance use of the revised Standard. /2

2 -2- Training Bulletin, Issue 108 version 1.0 Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard If you have any questions regarding the revised DNR Standard or the DNR Confirmation Form, please contact Ms. Cathy Francis, Manager of Education and Patient Care Standards at (416) Malcolm Bates c: D. Brown, Senior Manager, Operations and Quality Management Dr. A. Campeau, Manager, Land Ambulance Programs Senior Field Managers/Field Managers, EHSB C. Francis, Manager, Education and Patient Care Standards CACC/ACS Managers R. Nishman, Manager, Air Ambulance J. Van Pelt, Manager, Investigations, Certification and Regulatory Compliance Dr. C. Mazza, CEO, Ornge Dr. B. Sawadsky, Ornge R. Burgess, Chair, OBHG Dr. M. Welsford, Chair, MAC Regional Training Coordinators Paramedic Program Coordinators

3 Training Bulletin Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard Emergency Health Services Branch Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care

4 Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard Table of Contents Introduction 1 Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Confirmation Form 3 Appendix 1 Do Not Resuscitate Standard 14 Appendix 2 Frequently Asked Questions 23 Appendix 3 Case Studies 31 Appendix 4 Case Studies Answer Key 36 Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard i

5 Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard Introduction Paramedics often respond to calls where a patient on their own or through a substitute decision-maker has decided in advance that they do not wish to be resuscitated in the event that they suffer a respiratory or cardiorespiratory arrest. These situations require paramedics to rapidly decide whether or not it is appropriate to honour a Do Not Resuscitate request presented to them. The Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care is introducing an updated DNR Standard for paramedics. This standard will replace Policy 4.6, as found in the Basic Life Support Patient Care Standards. The updated DNR Standard will be implemented on February 1, Prior to the introduction of Policy 4.6 in 1999, paramedics were expected to attempt resuscitation for all patients who experienced a respiratory or cardiorespiratory arrest, unless the patient met specific criteria for legal or obvious death. This sometimes prevented paramedics from honouring the end-of-life wishes of patients and their families. The introduction of Policy 4.6 was a significant step in allowing paramedics to honour the wishes of patients and their families at the time of an expected death. Policy 4.6 however had some operational limitations. Most notably was that the policy was in effect only if the patient was being transported between institutions or from an institution to home. Policy 4.6 also required a physician or a physician s delegate to be present at the sending institution to present paramedics with a copy of the DNR Order and the DNR/Validity Order Form. The updated DNR Standard (February 2008) builds upon the previous policy by addressing these and other issues that were identified by a taskforce established by the Ministry of Health and Long- Term Care. The DNR Taskforce was made up of representatives from a number of organizations that are actively involved in the care of palliative patients. The taskforce s mandate was to develop an updated DNR Standard for the Ministry through a consultative process with a wide range of land ambulance stakeholders involved in palliative care across the province. The updated DNR Standard will significantly enhance a paramedic s ability to honour the wishes of patients and their families when resuscitation is not part of the treatment plan for the patient. The standard has been designed to provide a standardized process for all paramedics to follow that is consistent across the province. This process will minimize any chance of error and reduce the risk of liability to paramedics. A new Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Confirmation Form is an integral part of the application of the updated DNR Standard. This Training Bulletin has been developed to provide an opportunity to review the key points from the updated DNR Standard and Form. This Form directs the practice of paramedics and firefighters after February 1, 2008 in situations where a DNR order is part of a patient s treatment plan. Fire Departments will be developing Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) that incorporate the use of the DNR Confirmation Form for firefighters. These SOPs will be similar to the DNR Standard for paramedics. Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard 1

6 Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard The Do Not Resuscitate Standard currently is titled as Policy 4.6 in Section 1 (General Standard of Care) in the Basic Life Support Patient Care Standards. The Standard directs paramedic practice with respect to the management of situations where a patient, or the patient s substitute decisionmaker in cases where the patient is not capable, has expressed the wish not to be resuscitated in the event that they experience a respiratory or cardiorespiratory arrest. The DNR Standard outlines the process to be followed by paramedics to determine that a Do Not Resuscitate order is part of the current treatment plan for a patient and that the order is valid. Once the status of the DNR order has been determined, the Standard clearly identifies what actions a paramedic is to take including any treatments or interventions. Definitions Before the specifics of the DNR Standard are discussed, it is important that the definitions of two key terms used throughout the Standard are clarified. These terms may have different meanings to different groups and it is important for paramedics to understand the definitions as they pertain specifically to the DNR Standard. 1) Do Not Resuscitate For the purposes of the DNR Standard, a Do Not Resuscitate or DNR order is defined as the existence of a current plan of treatment that reflects a patient s expressed wish when capable, or the consent of a substitute decision-maker when the patient is incapable, that cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) not be included in the treatment plan. A DNR order may also be valid when it is a physician s current opinion that CPR will almost certainly not benefit a patient and it is therefore not part of the plan of treatment. 2) Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) CPR is defined as an immediate application of life-saving measures to a person who has suffered a sudden respiratory or cardiorespiratory arrest. These measures include the critical interventions described within both basic and advanced cardiac life support. When a valid DNR order exists, a paramedic, according to their scope of practice, will not initiate any of the interventions considered part of CPR. Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard 2

7 Do Not Resuscitate Confirmation Form Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care Office of the Fire Marshal Serial Number Do Not Resuscitate Confirmation Form To Direct the Practice of Paramedics and Firefighters after February 1, 2008 Confidential when completed When this form is signed by a physician (M.D.), registered nurse (R.N.), registered nurse in the extended class (R.N. (EC)) or registered practical nurse (R.P.N.), a paramedic or firefighter will not initiate basic or advanced cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) (see point #1) and will provide necessary comfort measures (see point #2) to the patient named below: Patient s name please print clearly Surname Given Name 1. Do Not Resuscitate means that the paramedic (according to scope of practice) or firefighter (according to skill level) will not initiate basic or advanced cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) such as: Chest compression; Defibrillation; Artificial ventilation; Insertion of an oropharyngeal or nasopharyngeal airway; Endotracheal intubation; Transcutaneous pacing; Advanced resuscitation drugs such as, but not limited to, vasopressors, antiarrhythmic agents and opioid antagonists. 2. For the purposes of providing comfort (palliative) care, the paramedic (according to scope of practice) or firefighter (according to skill level) will provide interventions or therapies considered necessary to provide comfort or alleviate pain. These include but are not limited to the provision of oropharyngeal suctioning, oxygen, nitroglycerin, salbutamol, glucagon, epinephrine for anaphylaxis, morphine (or other opioid analgesic), ASA or benzodiazepines. The signature below confirms with respect to the above-named patient, that the following condition (check one ) has been met and documented in the patient s health record. A current plan of treatment exists that reflects the patient s expressed wish when capable, or consent of the substitute decision-maker when the patient is incapable, that CPR not be included in the patient s plan of treatment. The physician s current opinion is that CPR will almost certainly not benefit the patient and is not part of the plan of treatment, and the physician has discussed this with the capable patient, or the substitute decision-maker when the patient is incapable. Check one of the following: Print name in full Surname M.D. R.N. R.N. (EC) R.P.N. Given Name Signature Date (yyyy/mm/dd) Each form has a unique serial number. Use of photocopies is permitted only after this form has been fully completed (07/10) Queen s Printer for Ontario, Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard 3

8 Do Not Resuscitate Confirmation Form (continued) A new Form, the Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Confirmation Form, has been developed for use in conjunction with the updated DNR Standard. The DNR Confirmation Form, when completed and signed by a medical doctor (M.D.), Registered Nurse (R.N.), Registered Nurse in the Extended Class [R.N. (EC)] or Registered Practical Nurse (R.P.N.) will confirm that the existing plan of treatment documented in the patient s health care record does not include CPR. The DNR Confirmation Form, when completed, provides direction to both paramedics and firefighters with respect to what patient care interventions may or may not be initiated for the patient during the time that they are responsible for patient care. Paramedics and firefighters are not required to review or confirm the actual DNR order on the patient s health care record as the signatory of the Form is responsible to ensure that the order exists and that it is current. The DNR Confirmation Form has a number of unique features that make it simple to use for patients and their families, health care providers and paramedics. The Form is a single page, single copy, bilingual document. An English version of the Form is on one side of the page while a French version is located on the other side. This convenient feature negates the need to maintain separate inventories of the Form in both languages. Each DNR Confirmation Form will be imprinted with a unique seven-digit serial number in the upper right hand corner. There are several advantages to having a serial number on the Form. Having a unique serial number assists paramedics in determining the authenticity of the Form as only designated health care providers and institutions will have access to ordering the numbered Forms. Paramedics who are presented with a Form without the serial number should question the authenticity of the Form and not accept it as a valid Form. Having a unique serial number on the Form will also assist in patient tracking should the need arise. Paramedics are to document the serial number of the Form on the Ambulance Call Report (ACR) completed for the call for future reference. Future versions of the ACR will include a field specifically to document the DNR Confirmation Form serial number. In the interim, this number can be recorded in the Remarks/Orders area. The DNR Confirmation Form is considered a durable document. This means the Form can be used as many times as necessary. This adds convenience as a health care provider is not required to complete and sign a new Form each time a patient is transported in an ambulance. In addition, once the Form has been completed and signed by the patient s health care provider, additional photocopies can be made, allowing for the safe keeping of the original document. Furthermore, the DNR Confirmation Form has no specified expiry date. By implication, the expiry date of the Form coincides with the date of the patient s death unless the patient s treatment plan changes to include cardiopulmonary resuscitation or the patient, or substitute decision-maker on behalf of the patient, expresses a wish that CPR be initiated in the event of a respiratory or cardiorespiratory arrest. The rescinding of the DNR order may be made by the patient or substitute decision-maker at any time and may not necessarily be documented in the patient s health care record. Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard 4

9 Do Not Resuscitate Confirmation Form (continued) Determining the Validity of a Do Not Resuscitate Confirmation Form Paramedics must confirm that all of the mandatory applicable fields on a DNR Confirmation Form are completed and that the Form is signed by a designated health care provider. Incomplete Forms cannot be considered valid and if an incomplete Form is received, paramedics will not be permitted to honour the Do Not Resuscitate request. Each section of the DNR Confirmation Form will be described in detail below. This exercise will assist paramedics in determining the validity of a Form being presented to them and provide additional clarity on the information required in specific areas on the Form. Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care Office of the Fire Marshal Serial Number Do Not Resuscitate Confirmation Form To Direct the Practice of Paramedics and Firefighters after February 1, 2008 Confidential when completed When this form is signed by a physician (M.D.), registered nurse (R.N.), registered nurse in the extended class (R.N. (EC)) or registered practical nurse (R.P.N.), a paramedic or firefighter will not initiate basic or advanced cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) (see point #1) and will provide necessary comfort measures (see point #2) to the patient named below: Patient s name please print clearly Surname Given Name 1. Do Not Resuscitate means that the paramedic (according to scope of practice) or firefighter (according to skill level) will not initiate basic or advanced cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) such as: Chest compression; Defibrillation; Artificial ventilation; Insertion of an oropharyngeal or nasopharyngeal airway; Endotracheal intubation; Transcutaneous pacing; Advanced resuscitation drugs such as, but not limited to, vasopressors, antiarrhythmic agents and opioid antagonists. Unique Serial Number 2. For the purposes of providing comfort (palliative) care, the paramedic (according to scope of practice) or firefighter (according to skill level) will provide interventions or therapies considered necessary to provide comfort or alleviate pain. These include but are not limited to the provision of oropharyngeal suctioning, oxygen, nitroglycerin, salbutamol, glucagon, epinephrine for anaphylaxis, morphine (or other opioid analgesic), ASA or benzodiazepines. The signature below confirms with respect to the above-named patient, that the following condition (check one ) has been met and documented in the patient s health record. A current plan of treatment exists that reflects the patient s expressed wish when capable, or consent of the substitute decision-maker when the patient is incapable, that CPR not be included in the patient s plan of treatment. The physician s current opinion is that CPR will almost certainly not benefit the patient and is not part of the plan of treatment, and the physician has discussed this with the capable patient, or the substitute decision-maker when the patient is incapable. Check one of the following: Print name in full Surname M.D. R.N. R.N. (EC) R.P.N. Given Name Signature Date (yyyy/mm/dd) Each form has a unique serial number. Use of photocopies is permitted only after this form has been fully completed (07/10) Queen s Printer for Ontario, Each DNR Confirmation Form will be imprinted with a seven-digit unique serial number in the upper right hand corner. Forms without this serial number cannot be considered valid. As indicated earlier, paramedics must document this serial number in the appropriate area on the ACR for every patient transported with a valid DNR Confirmation Form. Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard 5

10 Do Not Resuscitate Confirmation Form (continued) Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care Office of the Fire Marshal Serial Number Do Not Resuscitate Confirmation Form To Direct the Practice of Paramedics and Firefighters after February 1, 2008 Confidential when completed When this form is signed by a physician (M.D.), registered nurse (R.N.), registered nurse in the extended class (R.N. (EC)) or registered practical nurse (R.P.N.), a paramedic or firefighter will not initiate basic or advanced cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) (see point #1) and will provide necessary comfort measures (see point #2) to the patient named below: Patient s name please print clearly Surname Given Name 1. Do Not Resuscitate means that the paramedic (according to scope of practice) or firefighter (according to skill level) will not initiate basic or advanced cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) such as: Chest compression; Defibrillation; Artificial ventilation; Insertion of an oropharyngeal or nasopharyngeal airway; Endotracheal intubation; Transcutaneous pacing; Advanced resuscitation drugs such as, but not limited to, vasopressors, antiarrhythmic agents and opioid antagonists. 2. For the purposes of providing comfort (palliative) care, the paramedic (according to scope of practice) or firefighter (according to skill level) will provide interventions or therapies considered necessary to provide comfort or alleviate pain. These include but are not limited to the provision of oropharyngeal suctioning, oxygen, nitroglycerin, salbutamol, glucagon, epinephrine for anaphylaxis, morphine (or other opioid analgesic), ASA or benzodiazepines. The signature below confirms with respect to the above-named patient, that the following condition (check one ) has been met and documented in the patient s health record. A current plan of treatment exists that reflects the patient s expressed wish when capable, or consent of the substitute decision-maker when the patient is incapable, that CPR not be included in the patient s plan of treatment. The physician s current opinion is that CPR will almost certainly not benefit the patient and is not part of the plan of treatment, and the physician has discussed this with the capable patient, or the substitute decision-maker when the patient is incapable. Check one of the following: Print name in full Surname M.D. R.N. R.N. (EC) R.P.N. Given Name Signature Date (yyyy/mm/dd) Each form has a unique serial number. Use of photocopies is permitted only after this form has been fully completed (07/10) Queen s Printer for Ontario, This section of the DNR Confirmation Form contains a statement describing the purpose of the Form. It is this statement that provides direction to paramedics and firefighters, enabling them to honour a DNR order made on behalf of the patient identified in the Patient s name field found directly below the statement. The statement in this section also sets forth the patient care interventions that will or will not be initiated by paramedics when the Form is completed and signed by a designated health care provider. Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard 6

11 Do Not Resuscitate Confirmation Form (continued) Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care Office of the Fire Marshal Serial Number Do Not Resuscitate Confirmation Form To Direct the Practice of Paramedics and Firefighters after February 1, 2008 Confidential when completed When this form is signed by a physician (M.D.), registered nurse (R.N.), registered nurse in the extended class (R.N. (EC)) or registered practical nurse (R.P.N.), a paramedic or firefighter will not initiate basic or advanced cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) (see point #1) and will provide necessary comfort measures (see point #2) to the patient named below: Patient s name please print clearly Surname Given Name 1. Do Not Resuscitate means that the paramedic (according to scope of practice) or firefighter (according to skill level) will not initiate basic or advanced cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) such as: Chest compression; Defibrillation; Artificial ventilation; Insertion of an oropharyngeal or nasopharyngeal airway; Endotracheal intubation; Transcutaneous pacing; Advanced resuscitation drugs such as, but not limited to, vasopressors, antiarrhythmic agents and opioid antagonists. 2. For the purposes of providing comfort (palliative) care, the paramedic (according to scope of practice) or firefighter (according to skill level) will provide interventions or therapies considered necessary to provide comfort or alleviate pain. These include but are not limited to the provision of oropharyngeal suctioning, oxygen, nitroglycerin, salbutamol, glucagon, epinephrine for anaphylaxis, morphine (or other opioid analgesic), ASA or benzodiazepines. The signature below confirms with respect to the above-named patient, that the following condition (check one ) has been met and documented in the patient s health record. A current plan of treatment exists that reflects the patient s expressed wish when capable, or consent of the substitute decision-maker when the patient is incapable, that CPR not be included in the patient s plan of treatment. The physician s current opinion is that CPR will almost certainly not benefit the patient and is not part of the plan of treatment, and the physician has discussed this with the capable patient, or the substitute decision-maker when the patient is incapable. Check one of the following: Print name in full Surname M.D. R.N. R.N. (EC) R.P.N. Given Name Signature Date (yyyy/mm/dd) Each form has a unique serial number. Use of photocopies is permitted only after this form has been fully completed (07/10) Queen s Printer for Ontario, Point 1 of this section, located directly below the patient s name, includes the definition of Do Not Resuscitate as it relates to the DNR Standard. In addition, it provides a list of specific examples of interventions that are considered a part of cardiopulmonary resuscitation and as such, are not to be initiated by paramedics for a patient with a valid DNR Confirmation Form. It is important to note that the direction provided to paramedics within the definition of Do Not Resuscitate uses the specific language will not initiate when speaking to interventions that are considered part of cardiopulmonary resuscitation. If a treatment that would normally be considered a resuscitative measure was initiated as part of the patient s ongoing plan of treatment prior to the arrival of the paramedic crew, the treatment is to be maintained. If the paramedic crew is presented with a valid DNR Confirmation Form on their arrival and the patient s condition deteriorates, no additional interventions that would be considered part of CPR are to be initiated by the crew. Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard 7

12 Do Not Resuscitate Confirmation Form (continued) An example of this type of situation may involve a patient who is normally breathing with the assistance of a ventilator due to their underlying medical condition. Paramedics would be expected to maintain positive pressure ventilation as it is part of the patient s ongoing treatment plan. If the patient were to suffer a cardiac arrest while in the care of the paramedics however, no further resuscitation interventions would be initiated as these interventions would not be considered part of the previously on-going treatment. Point 2 in this section demonstrates that comfort (palliative) care remains a crucial part of the care that paramedics provide to a patient despite the existence of a valid DNR Confirmation Form. This section describes the types of interventions that will be initiated even in cases where a valid DNR Confirmation Form exists. These types of interventions are considered palliative and are employed for symptom relief to make the patient as comfortable as possible. Some interventions, such as epinephrine for anaphylaxis, are aggressive treatments that may be considered life-saving in order to manage an unforeseen and immediately correctable condition. It should be considered and utilized when appropriate as it is not included on the list in Point 1. Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard 8

13 Do Not Resuscitate Confirmation Form (continued) Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care Office of the Fire Marshal Serial Number Do Not Resuscitate Confirmation Form To Direct the Practice of Paramedics and Firefighters after February 1, 2008 Confidential when completed When this form is signed by a physician (M.D.), registered nurse (R.N.), registered nurse in the extended class (R.N. (EC)) or registered practical nurse (R.P.N.), a paramedic or firefighter will not initiate basic or advanced cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) (see point #1) and will provide necessary comfort measures (see point #2) to the patient named below: Patient s name please print clearly Surname Given Name 1. Do Not Resuscitate means that the paramedic (according to scope of practice) or firefighter (according to skill level) will not initiate basic or advanced cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) such as: Chest compression; Defibrillation; Artificial ventilation; Insertion of an oropharyngeal or nasopharyngeal airway; Endotracheal intubation; Transcutaneous pacing; Advanced resuscitation drugs such as, but not limited to, vasopressors, antiarrhythmic agents and opioid antagonists. 2. For the purposes of providing comfort (palliative) care, the paramedic (according to scope of practice) or firefighter (according to skill level) will provide interventions or therapies considered necessary to provide comfort or alleviate pain. These include but are not limited to the provision of oropharyngeal suctioning, oxygen, nitroglycerin, salbutamol, glucagon, epinephrine for anaphylaxis, morphine (or other opioid analgesic), ASA or benzodiazepines. The signature below confirms with respect to the above-named patient, that the following condition (check one ) has been met and documented in the patient s health record. A current plan of treatment exists that reflects the patient s expressed wish when capable, or consent of the substitute decision-maker when the patient is incapable, that CPR not be included in the patient s plan of treatment. The physician s current opinion is that CPR will almost certainly not benefit the patient and is not part of the plan of treatment, and the physician has discussed this with the capable patient, or the substitute decision-maker when the patient is incapable. Check one of the following: Print name in full Surname M.D. R.N. R.N. (EC) R.P.N. Given Name Signature Date (yyyy/mm/dd) Each form has a unique serial number. Use of photocopies is permitted only after this form has been fully completed (07/10) Queen s Printer for Ontario, The health care provider who completes and signs the DNR Confirmation Form is confirming that one of the two conditions indicated in this section has been met and is documented in the health care record of the patient named on the Form. This requires that the signatory exercise due diligence by confirming that the information is correct before signing the Form. Paramedics are not expected to investigate the condition under which a DNR order is made nor are they required to actually review or confirm the DNR order written in the patient s health care record. A check in the first tick box indicates that a plan of treatment exists in the patient s health record and that this plan does not include CPR. Secondly, it indicates that the plan of treatment reflects the patients expressed wish when capable or the consent of a substitute decision-maker when the patient has been deemed incapable. Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard 9

14 Do Not Resuscitate Confirmation Form (continued) The second tick box is checked when it is a physician s opinion that CPR will almost certainly not benefit the patient and that the decision not to include CPR in the patient s treatment plan was discussed with the patient or the substitute decision-maker when the patient is incapable. A nurse can check this box and sign the Form if they know that this was the condition under which the patient s plan of treatment (that does not include CPR) was developed. It is the responsibility of the health care provider signing the Form to ensure that the documentation in the health care record supports the information indicated in the DNR Confirmation Form. Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care Office of the Fire Marshal Serial Number Do Not Resuscitate Confirmation Form To Direct the Practice of Paramedics and Firefighters after February 1, 2008 Confidential when completed When this form is signed by a physician (M.D.), registered nurse (R.N.), registered nurse in the extended class (R.N. (EC)) or registered practical nurse (R.P.N.), a paramedic or firefighter will not initiate basic or advanced cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) (see point #1) and will provide necessary comfort measures (see point #2) to the patient named below: Patient s name please print clearly Surname Given Name 1. Do Not Resuscitate means that the paramedic (according to scope of practice) or firefighter (according to skill level) will not initiate basic or advanced cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) such as: Chest compression; Defibrillation; Artificial ventilation; Insertion of an oropharyngeal or nasopharyngeal airway; Endotracheal intubation; Transcutaneous pacing; Advanced resuscitation drugs such as, but not limited to, vasopressors, antiarrhythmic agents and opioid antagonists. 2. For the purposes of providing comfort (palliative) care, the paramedic (according to scope of practice) or firefighter (according to skill level) will provide interventions or therapies considered necessary to provide comfort or alleviate pain. These include but are not limited to the provision of oropharyngeal suctioning, oxygen, nitroglycerin, salbutamol, glucagon, epinephrine for anaphylaxis, morphine (or other opioid analgesic), ASA or benzodiazepines. The signature below confirms with respect to the above-named patient, that the following condition (check one ) has been met and documented in the patient s health record. A current plan of treatment exists that reflects the patient s expressed wish when capable, or consent of the substitute decision-maker when the patient is incapable, that CPR not be included in the patient s plan of treatment. The physician s current opinion is that CPR will almost certainly not benefit the patient and is not part of the plan of treatment, and the physician has discussed this with the capable patient, or the substitute decision-maker when the patient is incapable. Check one of the following: Print name in full Surname M.D. R.N. R.N. (EC) R.P.N. Given Name Signature Date (yyyy/mm/dd) Each form has a unique serial number. Use of photocopies is permitted only after this form has been fully completed (07/10) Queen s Printer for Ontario, This section of the DNR Confirmation Form requires that the signatory indicate their professional designation by checking the appropriate tick box, printing their surname and given name(s) in the areas indicated, signing and dating the Form. Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard 10

15 On-Scene Directives On the scene of any call, regardless of the patient s condition, paramedics are expected to follow the appropriate standards of care indicated in the Basic Life Support Patient Care Standards. Concurrently, when a paramedic becomes aware of the existence of a DNR Confirmation Form, they will obtain the Form from the patient, family member or caregiver at the scene. It should be noted that the validity of the DNR Confirmation Form is not dependent on the presence of the health care provider who completed and signed the Form being on the scene. Once the Form is obtained, the paramedic should review it carefully to ensure that it is valid as indicated by the presence of the serial number and by the completion of all of the required fields that were identified in the previous sections. If it is determined that the DNR Confirmation Form is not valid for any reason, paramedics must continue to provide care to the patient in accordance with the Basic Life Support Patient Care Standards and the Advanced Life Support Patient Care Standards. In addition to obtaining the completed DNR Confirmation Form and determining the validity of the Form, paramedics must make all reasonable efforts to ensure that the patient named on the Form is the person to whom they are attending to. While it is preferable to have confirming documentation to identify the patient, it may not be feasible or practical to obtain this in all instances. Paramedics may have to rely on verbal confirmation by the person at the scene who presented the DNR Confirmation Form to assist confirming the identity of the patient. Patient Not in Respiratory or Cardiorespiratory Arrest on Arrival After arriving at a scene, where a valid DNR Confirmation Form is presented to the paramedic crew and it is determined that the patient is not experiencing respiratory or cardiorespiratory arrest, the paramedics will provide palliative care as required in addition to any other assessments and interventions (other than interventions considered part of CPR) necessary until arrival at the destination. Non-Medical Escort If respiratory or cardiorespiratory arrest appears likely during the transport of the patient and someone other than an escort from a sending facility requests to accompany the patient in the ambulance, paramedics will, if feasible, confirm that the person is aware of the valid DNR Confirmation Form. The person accompanying the patient is to be made aware of and understand the procedures that will not be initiated should the patient experience a respiratory or cardiorespiratory arrest during transport as well as the process with respect to the receiving facility. Paramedics should also ensure that the person wishing to accompany the patient is aware that alternate modes of transportation may be appropriate for them if they are uncomfortable accompanying the patient in the ambulance under these circumstances. Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard 11

16 On-Scene Directives (continued) Patient Death Prior to Paramedic Arrival In circumstances where a paramedic is presented with a valid DNR Confirmation Form on arrival at a scene and it is determined that the patient is vital signs absent, transport of the patient is not to be initiated. The Central Ambulance Communications Centre (CACC)/Ambulance Communications Service (ACS)/Ornge CC (air ambulance Communications Centre) is to be notified immediately of the situation and advised of the existence of a DNR Confirmation Form. Paramedics are to follow local procedures for the handling of the deceased and the certification of death. There is no requirement to patch to a base hospital in this event. Transport Directives Death Occurs During Ambulance Transport If a patient with a valid DNR Confirmation Form experiences a cardiorespiratory arrest during ambulance transport, paramedics will confirm that death has occurred by checking respirations and pulse for a minimum of three (3) minutes from the time that the arrest was noted. Do not begin CPR. If the respirations and pulse remain absent after three (3) minutes, document the time of death and advise the CACC/ACS/Ornge CC of the situation including the existence of the DNR Confirmation Form. There is no requirement to patch to a base hospital in this event. Continue to transport the deceased to the receiving facility or to a facility as directed by the CACC/ACS/Ornge CC. The receiving facility, if applicable, should be notified that a patient with a valid DNR Confirmation Form has died during transport. Paramedics should follow local procedures for handling a deceased patient. Post-Call Procedures Patient Alive at Destination If a patient transported with a valid DNR Confirmation Form to a health care facility does not experience a respiratory or cardiorespiratory arrest enroute, the paramedic crew will provide the receiving staff with a verbal report regarding the patient s condition as well as notifying them of the existence of a DNR Confirmation Form. The DNR Confirmation Form and the completed ACR, if applicable, is to be provided to the receiving facility staff. Death Occurs Prior to Arrival at Destination If a patient being transported with a valid DNR Confirmation Form dies prior to arrival at the destination, paramedics will provide a verbal report to the receiving facility staff which includes the time that death occurred, the circumstances surrounding the death and the existence of a valid DNR Confirmation Form. The DNR Confirmation Form and the completed ACR, if applicable, is to be provided to the receiving facility staff. Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard 12

17 Documentation Requirements An Ambulance Call Report will be completed by the paramedic crew in accordance with the requirements of the Ambulance Service Documentation Standards and the Basic Life Support Patient Care Standards. In all cases where a patient is transported with a valid DNR Confirmation Form, the unique serial number, any additional information pertaining to the Form and the events surrounding the call must be documented on the ACR. Summary The updated Do Not Resuscitate Standard and the DNR Confirmation Form have been developed to better meet the needs of patients and their families in all settings when Do Not Resuscitate is part of their current treatment plan. The process has been designed to be easier to use by both paramedics and health care providers responsible for the care of patients. The updated Standard promotes a standardized process for paramedics to follow that ensures consistency across the province. A list of Frequently Asked Questions that provide additional information regarding the DNR Standard and several case studies have been included with this Training Bulletin. Paramedics are encouraged to complete the case studies and evaluate their knowledge of the updated Do Not Resuscitate Standard using the answer keys that have been provided. Paramedics are encouraged to review this Training Bulletin as required to maintain their familiarity and working knowledge of the Standard. Regular review of all Standards relevant to paramedic practice will help ensure the delivery of the highest quality of care to all patients. Any questions regarding the Do Not Resuscitate Standard or the Do Not Resuscitate Confirmation Form should be directed to your ambulance service management for clarification. Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard 13

18 Appendix 1 Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard 14

19 Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard Purpose: To provide directives for paramedics when they are responsible for patient treatment and/or transport and are provided with, by or on behalf of a patient, a Valid Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MOHLTC) Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Confirmation Form (see Appendix). References: Ambulance Act and Ontario Regulation 257/00 Health Care Consent Act, 1996 Substitute Decisions Act, 1992 A Model to Guide Hospice Palliative Care Based on National Principles and Norms of Practice, Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association, 2002 Appendix: MOHLTC Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Confirmation Form Definitions: For purposes of this standard: 1. Capable A person is considered to be mentally capable with respect to a treatment if: (a) the person is able to understand the information that is relevant to making a decision concerning the treatment, and, (b) the person is able to appreciate the reasonably foreseeable consequences of a decision or lack of decision regarding the treatment. 2. Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) - An immediate application of life-saving measures to a person who has suffered sudden respiratory or cardiorespiratory arrest. These measures include but are not limited to basic or advanced cardiac life support interventions such as: Chest compression; Defibrillation; Artificial ventilation; Insertion of an oropharyngeal or nasopharyngeal airway; Endotracheal intubation; Transcutaneous pacing; Advanced resuscitation drugs such as, but not limited to, vasopressors, antiarrhythmic agents and opioid antagonists. 3. Comfort (Palliative) Care Therapies which aim to relieve suffering and improve the quality of living and dying i.e. necessary to provide comfort or alleviate pain. These include but are not limited to the provision of oropharyngeal suctioning, oxygen, nitroglycerin, salbutamol, glucagon, epinephrine for anaphylaxis, morphine (or other opioid analgesics), ASA, or benzodiazepines. 4. Do Not Resuscitate means that the paramedic (according to scope of practice) will not initiate any of the interventions listed in the definition of CPR, above. Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard 15

20 Definitions (continued): 5. DNR Confirmation Form The Form set out in the Appendix. 6. Health Care Facility a facility including but not limited to: a hospital defined under the Public Hospitals Act, Private Hospitals Act and Mental Hospitals Act including psychiatric facilities; nursing homes under the Nursing Homes Act; approved homes under the Homes for Special Care Act (homes for care of persons requiring nursing, residential or sheltered care); managed in-home programs for the terminally ill (e.g. Hospital-in-the-Home, Home Care Programs, Palliative Care Programs); other facilities where a physician or physician s delegate is available (e.g., outpost nursing stations, physician s offices, Community Health Centres (CHCs), Health Service Organizations (HSOs), etc.). 7. Health Care Provider A member of a health profession regulated under the Regulated Health Professions Act. 8. Paramedic is the same as defined under the Ambulance Act, and for the purposes of this standard includes an Emergency Medical Attendant as defined under the Ambulance Act. 9. Patient a person who a) receives first aid, emergency or other medical treatment from a paramedic or, b) is transported in an ambulance by a paramedic. 10. Substitute Decision-Maker (SDM) - a person who is legally authorized to give or refuse consent to a treatment on behalf of a person who is incapable with respect to the treatment. 11. Treatment - any action or service that is provided for a therapeutic, preventive, palliative, diagnostic, cosmetic or other health-related purpose, and includes a course of treatment or plan of treatment. 12. Valid DNR Confirmation Form A DNR Confirmation Form with pre-printed serial number that has been completed, in full, with the following information: (a) The patient s name (including both surname and first name) to whom the Form applies. (b) A tick box that has been checked to identify that one of the following conditions has been met: A current plan of treatment exists that reflects the patient s expressed wish when capable, or consent of the substitute decision-maker when the patient is incapable, that CPR not be included in the patient s plan of treatment. The physician s current opinion is that CPR will almost certainly not benefit the patient and is not part of the plan of treatment, and the physician has discussed this with the capable patient, or the substitute decision-maker when the patient is incapable. (c) A tick box that has been checked to identify the professional designation of the Medical Doctor (M.D.), Registered Practical Nurse (R.P.N.), Registered Nurse (R.N.), or Registered Nurse in the Extended Class (R.N.(EC)) who has signed the Form. Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard 16

21 Definitions (continued): (d) Printed name of the M.D., R.P.N., R.N., or R.N. (EC) signing the Form. (e) A signature by the appropriate M.D., R.P.N., R.N., or R.N. (EC). (f) The date that the Form was signed, which must be the same as or precede the date of request for ambulance service. A Valid DNR Confirmation Form may be a fully completed original, or a photocopy of a fully completed original. I. General Directives: A. Where a paramedic is responsible for patient treatment during transport: 1. A paramedic, upon obtaining a Valid DNR Confirmation Form and subject to paragraph 2 below, will not initiate cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) on the patient in the event that the patient experiences respiratory or cardiorespiratory arrest. 2. A paramedic will initiate CPR on a patient who has experienced respiratory or cardiorespiratory arrest when: (a) a Valid DNR Confirmation Form is not obtained; or (b) the patient with a Valid DNR Confirmation Form appears to the paramedic to be capable and expresses clearly a wish to be resuscitated in the event that he/she experiences a respiratory or cardiorespiratory arrest; or (c) the patient with a Valid DNR Confirmation Form appears to the paramedic to be capable and expresses a wish to be resuscitated in the event that he/she experiences respiratory or cardiorespiratory arrest, but the request is vague, incomplete or ambiguous such that it is no longer clear what the wishes of the patient are; or (d) the Substitute Decision-Maker (SDM) has rescinded the Valid DNR Confirmation Form by stating he/she wants the patient to have CPR; or (e) there is confusion about who the SDM is and/or one or more people present at the time is demanding that CPR be initiated on the patient; or (f) it would, due to the immediate circumstances, be clearly unreasonable to honour the directions in the Valid DNR Confirmation Form, including but not limited to the case where a combative or aggressive person present at the time is demanding that CPR be initiated on the patient and the paramedic perceives that to not do so would put his/her safety at risk. 3. Subject to General Directives 2(d), 2(e) and 2(f) of this standard, if a patient with a Valid DNR Confirmation Form suffers a respiratory or cardiorespiratory arrest and another person initiates CPR regardless of the Valid DNR Confirmation Form, a paramedic will attempt to honour the Valid DNR Confirmation Form and use his/her best judgement in attempting to reason with the person. The paramedic will not assist the person with CPR, or change transport priority or receiving destination. Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard 17

22 I. General Directives (continued): II. 4. For the purpose of providing comfort (palliative) care to patients, a paramedic (according to scope of practice) will provide interventions or therapies considered necessary to provide comfort or alleviate pain, including but not limited to those listed on the DNR Confirmation Form. 5. If a paramedic has received into his/her care a patient from outside of Ontario, DNR orders will be honoured by the paramedic, if and only if, a Valid DNR Confirmation Form has been provided and all requirements of this standard have been met. 6. A paramedic will consider the potential implications of transferring more than one patient at the same time by ambulance, if one or more of these patients has a Valid DNR Confirmation Form and appears likely to suffer a respiratory or cardiorespiratory arrest. The paramedic will use his/her best judgment in determining how to most effectively meet the needs of these patients and will confer with ambulance dispatch as required, regarding transport and destination requirements. B. Where a paramedic is not responsible for patient treatment during transport i.e. a health care provider escort from a sending facility accompanies the patient and is responsible for patient treatment during transport, including honouring DNR directives. The paramedic will: 1. take patient treatment direction from the escort (exception escort initiates CPR regardless of a Valid DNR Confirmation Form (see General Directives 2(f) and 3.); 2. follow other relevant BLS directives, guidelines and protocols as applicable e.g. termination of resuscitation, withholding resuscitation, handling and transport of the deceased, transport priority coding. On-Scene Directives: When a paramedic is aware of the existence of a DNR Confirmation Form: A. For a patient not in respiratory or cardiorespiratory arrest: 1. The paramedic will conduct the primary survey. Concurrent with conducting the primary survey, the paramedic will: (a) Obtain the DNR Confirmation Form to be carried by the paramedic during the call. (b) Review the Form to ensure that it is a Valid DNR Confirmation Form. (c) Confirm that the patient being transferred is the patient to whom the Valid DNR Confirmation Form applies. 2. If respiratory or cardiorespiratory arrest appears likely during transport and someone else is to accompany the patient in the ambulance, the paramedic will, if feasible, confirm that the accompanying person: (a) is aware of the Valid DNR Confirmation Form; (b) has an understanding about the procedures that the paramedic will not carry out should the patient suffer a respiratory or cardiorespiratory arrest during transport; Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) Standard 18

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